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Are You Investing In Your Physical Fitness?

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Many people set aside the funds they need for retirement but neglect to invest in their health and fitness for physical independence in old age. Ask yourself this question, how much can you enjoy your retirement years when you have lots of money but lacking in physical health?

If you’re over 50, it’s time to seriously invest in a health and fitness plan that will protect you from age-related mental and physical ailments. Beginning in your 40’s and for some as early as your 30’s, a naturally occurring process of muscle breakdown called sacopenia begins in your body. You can lose up to 1 to 2 pounds of muscle mass each year starting in your 40s, and this process will accelerate with age if left unabated.

Sacopenia can lead to muscle weakness, fatigue, insulin resistance, increased risk of falls, and loss of independence. These are the main things that are usually associated with the aging process. Not a pretty picture. However, you can start fighting sacopenia now, and in some cases, reverse this process through diet and exercise.

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Increasing protein consumption and weight training are two of the most effective ways to combat muscle wasting. While 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight (0.36 grams per pound) has been the normal daily protein recommendation for years. Now many new studies show that 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight (0.45 to 0.68 grams per pound) may be more beneficial in building, maintaining and reducing muscle loss.

Resistance training, also known as weight lifting, has proven to be the best form of exercise to build muscle and strength, which helps maintain your independence as you age. The good news is that it’s never too late to start. People well into their 90s have been shown to build muscle and strength with a properly designed weightlifting program. However, the earlier you start, the better. I recommend that you start strength training 2 to 3 times a week starting in your 40s.

Now that you see that investing in your health and fitness program is just as important as investing in your retirement account, where do you start? I suggest you find a board certified fitness professional and have them create a custom strength training program for you.

Thanks to Darvis Simms

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